Bike 43: A technical and social project

7 March 2023

Bike 43 not only produces environmentally friendly e-bikes but also cares about creating a workplace for those with disabilities.

The factory in Brussels is set up as an \’adapted work environment\’ that allows those with minor handicaps, such as deaf and/or mute, to work in a skilled trade. The founder of Bike 43, Etienne Richelle, has now spent five years training this team to help turn them into brilliant mechanics.

The team assemble the bikes across four zones:

  • Pre-assembly of the forks, handlebars, wheels, and other parts.
  • Assembly of the bikes on stands until the wheels are put on.
  • Mounting tables to install the drive system and brakes, and make all the minor adjustments.
  • Quality control, where every bike passes a detailed checklist and is test-driven.

In addition to providing an adapted work environment, Bike 43 also makes careful financial, technical, and social choices that respect the environment and people. The bicycle frames, as well as several accessories, are manufactured in Europe, and the bikes are all assembled locally. This decision has become even more important recently as more manufacturers bring production back to their local countries due to Covid production freezes and high transportation costs from Asia.

Bike 43\’s commitment to creating an inclusive work environment for those with disabilities and producing environmentally friendly e-bikes sets an excellent example for other companies. By prioritising the well-being of people and the environment, companies can create a more sustainable and equitable future for everyone.